Top Five Christmas Movies to Watch This Holiday Season


Tyler Hayley, Reporter And Editor

Every year families, partners, and friends come together to watch Christmas movies. Some people stick to the classics, others go with what’s new, but eventually we all have a list of movies we watch time and time again. So in the Christmas tradition of giving and sharing, here are my five favorite movies this holiday season.

Starting off this article strong is Klaus, a newer, animated movie from 2019 available on Netflix. I first watched this movie back in 2020 while we were all bundled up in quarantine. Klaus follows Jesper Johansson, a failing mailman who is sent to a desolate, little town to try to collect letters. There he meets a lonely toy maker, Klaus, through which Jesper finds a way to gather the letters he needs to return home. We’re taken along on a fun, delightful tale that gives new meaning to the character of Santa Claus. I consider it one of the higher-caliber animated Christmas movies with a plot that includes good storytelling, interesting characters, and a protagonist that you come to root for. It’s a feel-good story perfect for the holidays.

My next movie has already come to be considered a Christmas classic: How The Grinch Stole Christmas starring Jim Carrey. Sometimes adaptations can flop but this one perfectly embodied the original while still being its own movie. We get the classic tale of how the Grinch stole Christmas while going beyond that into a few other Whoville celebrations. They found the perfect cast for this film, with outstanding performances from Jim Carrey, Jeffrey Tambor, and Molly Shannon. It puts its own twist on the classic children’s story, showing a lighter, funnier side of the Grinch while also portraying a darker Whoville. We get a few new characters who only add to the story as well as backstories for our favorites. It’s a funny, joyful movie that is perfect for those who loved the original and is available on Hulu.

Third on my list is a little less known movie, Arthur Christmas. We follow the story of Santa Claus and how he runs his toy empire, or really how his son runs his toy empire. Every year Santa delivers billions of presents to kids around the world, but we see this system is not foolproof when one child doesn’t receive their gift. This puts a spin on the story where we go on a journey, with main character Arthur, to make sure nobody goes without a present from Santa. It’s a great family-friendly movie to watch to get you in the Christmas spirit, with an overlying message to always be yourself and to believe. I’ve found that of every age I have enjoyed this joyful movie which portrays funny characters, tumultuous family dynamics, and a cute group of reindeer. This film perfectly captures the Christmas spirit and you can watch it on Hulu.

Following is one of my favorite films to watch during the holiday season, although it’s not exactly a conventional Christmas movie. Trading Places, starring Eddie Murphy and Dan Akyroyd, is one of the underrated movies of the 1980s and can be found on Hulu. Occurring all during the holiday month, we follow Louis Winthrope and Billy Valentine as their lives are switched around and find themselves in new roles. They hurry to figure out why everything has suddenly changed while also getting revenge on those who caused all their troubles. While it is a comedy it does show us how the majority of our lives are all based on circumstances far beyond our control. Albeit not exactly a holiday-themed movie it gives the classic Christmas happy ending that accompanies many holiday films.

Last but not least is my favorite of all holiday movies, A Christmas Story. It’s a heartwarming, hilarious story of a boy who sets out to get exactly what he wants for Christmas. Ralphie, a nine year old boy, wants nothing more than a Red Ryder air rifle. But as his mother and father are adamantly opposed to this toy, he is constantly reminded, “You’ll shoot your eye out!”, he does everything he can to convince his parents this is the gift for him. We go through several amusing moments including clownish farces at school, getting kicked off Santa’s lap, and some kids’ worst nightmare, breaking your glasses. A Christmas Story, now available on Hulu and HBO Max, is the quintessential movie of the holidays and will go down in cinema history as a classic.

There are so many classic Christmas movies it’s hard to pick just five, but in my mind these are some of the best holiday films at the moment. Maybe you came to this article hoping for a new movie to watch, maybe you just wanted to see if your favorite would be on here, but no matter what, I hope you found something worth watching this holiday season. So have a good Hanukkah, merry Christmas, a great Boxing Day, an amazing Kwanzaa, and happy holidays.